Television Executive

Thomas J. McDermott, 65, a television producer who helped create such hit Western series as "The Rifleman" and "The Big Valley," died Aug. 11 at his home in Santa Monica after a heart attack.

He broke into entertainment as an advertising executive and then joined actors Dick Powell, Charles Boyer and David Niven in forming Four Star Television Inc., a production company that at one point had 11 prime time shows.

Mr. McDermott became president of the company when Powell died in 1963 and remained with the company until it was sold in 1970. He then had a six-year stint with RCA before working as a producer of movies and TV films.


Jazz Bassist

Louis Vola, 88, a jazz bassist who was a founding member of the legendary Hot Club Quintet in the 1930s, died last week in a hospital in Paris. The date and cause of his death were not reported.

Mr. Vola, who was born in the Riviera town of La-Seyne-Sur-Mer, helped found the quintet in 1934. He played bass on the first recordings by fellow group members Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli.

He went on to play bass in Ray Ventura's orchestra. He also backed up Benny Carter and Duke Ellington and the French singers Charles Trenet, Yves Montand and Georges Brassens.


Vatican Press Dean

Max Bergerre, 86, a French journalist who was dean of the Vatican Press Corps and had covered six popes, died of cancer Aug. 12 in Rome.

He began reporting from the Vatican in 1931, at the time of Pope Pius XI, for the French news agency Havas. After World War II, he worked as Vatican correspondent for Agence France-Presse. In recent years, he helped cover the Vatican for the Italian news agency ANSA.